Calgary approves route for southeast Green Line, will formally ask province for funds

City council has approved the route and station locations for the new southeast leg of the LRT and will now formally ask the Alberta government to come up with its share of the funding for the $4.5-billion Green Line mega-project.

Mega-project running from north end of city to the deep southeast expected to cost $4.5 billion in total

Council approved the southeast alignment of the new Green Line LRT, expected to cost $4.5 billion in total and eventually run from north-central Calgary to the city's deep southeast. (City of Calgary)

City council has approved the route and station locations for the new southeast leg of the LRT and will now formally ask the Alberta government to come up with its share of the funding for the $4.5-billion Green Line mega-project.

City staff will set about acquiring the necessary land for the southeast portion of the new C-Train line, which will eventually run from the city's northern periphery through downtown and all the way to the community of Seton.

Mayor Naheed Nenshi said the project will provide "incredible benefit to up to 200,000 people a day," once complete.

"It's a big legacy," the mayor said.

The previous federal government committed $1.53 billion to the project in the summer, days before calling the election it ultimately lost.

New Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said he will uphold the funding.

A rough diagram of the proposed route for the new Green Line of Calgary's LRT system. (City of Calgary)

City council also voted in 2013 to devote $52 million in yearly provincial "tax room" from 2015 to 2024 to fund the Green Line project, adding another $520 million to the pot of available funds.

So far, the provincial government has yet to commit any funds to the project, but the city has not made a formal request.

Council voted Tuesday to have the mayor make that request, in writing, to Alberta Transportation Minister Brian Mason.

City staff are to report back to council on their progress with the land acquisition and the project's overall status by April 2016.

The exact plan for the north-central portion of the line is still being sorted out, with questions remaining about how to cross the Bow River and proceed through downtown.